It goes like this....my brother-in-law and I arrived in Delbarton, WV around 11:30am and then shortly thereafter, the rest of our group showed up. There was 14 of us and 5 of them were renting, including my brother-in-law. He's never trail-ridden before and wanted to try it out before he bought an ATV of his own. It just started to rain, which we were happy about because it was dry and dusty. Anyway, once every one was unloaded and the rentals were dropped off, we mounted up and hit the trails.
We were at the Buffalo Mtn trail system and entered in at number 18 (going towards Matewan). At this point, the rain had stopped. Just enough water to keep the dust down and allow us to play a bit in some mud. Well 5 minutes into the ride, the first 5 of us are wondering where the rest of our group is. As it turns out, my brother-in-law flipped his rental. Not bad, but it did bend up the front rack. 5 more minutes into the ride, we are once again wondering where the rest of our group is. Turns out, my brother-in-law had another accident. He is okay so we continue our ride. Another 5 minutes later there is about 8 of us wondering where the other 6 are. He get on the 2-way and find out that my brother-in-law drove off a cliff. Thank God he hit a tree stump that was only 8 feet down. He's okay, but now I'm starting to worry. The 8 of us turn around to help winch him out.
We get back to the scene and my buddy tells me I shouldn't double-park. I start backing up and I hear my friend screamed STOP. I jumped, hit all the brakes and accidently tapped the throttle which backed me up 6 more inches. That put my right rear tire on the edge of the cliff/ravine. The dirt gave out from under the tire and it was just enough for the weight to shift to the back. She started to roll and jumped the heck off. She gained enough momentum, hit a huge tree which spun her around and up in the air, and that was it...she kept rolling.
Now, I don't know if you all have seen those cartoons or movies where the people throw something into a hole and are listening for that "something" to hit the bottom, but it never does. That was all 14 of us. Needless to say, I went after her and this ravine was steep. It took me two minutes to get down and 45 minutes to get up. By the time I had gotten back up, my other buddies had winched my brother-in-law out, but there was no way he was getting back on his rental.
As it turns out, he had some pretty bad tires. From what my buddies were saying, he wasn't going that fast and he had it in 4wd the whole time. What was worse was after the incident he told me he noticed the tires, but never said anything to the rental guy (not smart and that didn't make me happy considering I just lost my ride). As for me though, I was actually in good spirits. Granted I had just lost my ATV, but it could have been a lot worse. We just rode back to the cabins, drank and laughed about the whole thing.
Now, to answer some questions, yes, I had insurance on the ATV. It was the best $89 I ever spent. Anyone who doesn't have insurance on their rides, get it. As for the bike, it was a total loss. Even if I wanted to keep it, it would have cost me more money to buy all the Honda parts to fix her up then it would for a new one. I got most of the money back plus the aftermarket parts (cargo box, winch and tires). As for a new ride, I just picked her up on the 10th of November. Same make/model/year/color. I've already ordered some new parts (XT 30 winch, tamarack cargo box). Next I want to order wheels and tires.
Oh yeah, one more thing....if you ever go to the Buffalo Mtn trail system, considering staying at the Split Pine Lodge. Very nice accomodations and Barbara was a lovely hostess. She took good care of us. Also, don't ever rent from WV Outback ATV. They are only looking to make money. Even the local ranger warned us to stay away from them. If you have to rent, rent from C&S ATV Rentals.